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Our zoopolis: reconceptualising coexistence in more-than-human cities [Urban Anthropology Network (UrbAn)] 
Ferne Edwards (City, University of London)
Aylin Yildirim Tschoepe (University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland)
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Bettina Stoetzer (MIT)
Thursday 18 July, -, -
Time zone: Europe/Madrid
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Short Abstract:

A conceptualisation of Western cities needs to be “undone” to recognise the agency, ethics and values of multispecies natures within more-than-human places. This panel asks: How can anthropology contribute to understandings of multispecies coexistence towards realising just and sustainable cities?

Long Abstract:

A conceptualisation of Western cities needs to be “undone” to recognise the agency, values and ethics of multispecies natures within more-than-human places towards new possibilities of coexistence. Anthropology can contribute to this shift by going beyond the human toward relationally, reciprocally and ethically considering nonhuman creatures in new terms, spaces and times. This is not a new task – more-than-human or multispecies anthropologists, geographers, designers, and urbanists have already begun this reconceptualisation of the city. However, many also acknowledge that current approaches, such as nature-based solutions, ecosystem services and sustainable urban projects, often remain limited in their disciplinary perspective, scope and ethics. There is a need to recognise remnant and new forms of nature appearing in cities, and the encounters and spaces that can unfold – especially as urbanisation pressures coupled by disasters further increase proximities, thus heightening potential human/nonhuman zones of friction. We ask: How can anthropology contribute to the reconceptualisation and transition to a just and sustainable city of multispecies coexistence? We draw on and extend from publications such as ‘Urban Natures: Living the More-than-Human City’ (Edwards et al., 2023), ‘The Multispecies Salon’ (Kirksey, 2014), ‘When Species Meet’ (Haraway, 2008) and ‘Staying with the Trouble’ (Haraway, 2010) to invite contributions along the following lines:

• ethnographic research and/or

• theoretical explorations on multispecies matters and spaces

• further methods/methodologies for reconceptualising coexistence

• research on the agents and practices in an emerging zoopolis

We welcome contributions that explore the question and these lines in text-based and multimodal formats (text and images/video/audio/mapping, etc).

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -
Session 2 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -